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1 vote

What can I tell a student I am mentoring who claims: "I want to do pure mathematics because it is superior to any other subject in the world"?

In a sense, what the student is saying is true in that pure math is the best for them. But it's a little weird to say that it's just "the best". I work in econometrics. I don't think it's ...
Jared Greathouse's user avatar
0 votes

What can I tell a student I am mentoring who claims: "I want to do pure mathematics because it is superior to any other subject in the world"?

Is he good enough? If he is potentially a Wiles, or a Ramanujan, or a Conway, or a Perelman, then let him go for it. Otherwise he may need to learn a little humility. Caution him gently about funding, ...
Simon Crase's user avatar
3 votes

What can I tell a student I am mentoring who claims: "I want to do pure mathematics because it is superior to any other subject in the world"?

"Define superior?" The student might notice what they are doing if you simply ask that question. What is the ordering of this? Order by difficulty? Not having to think about whether the ...
Felix B.'s user avatar
  • 688
18 votes

What can I tell a student I am mentoring who claims: "I want to do pure mathematics because it is superior to any other subject in the world"?

Oh man, this question triggered me so much that I actually created an account. So I'm a "pure" mathematics dropout; I finished a PhD in 2012 and did a couple of postdocs. It was fantastic. I ...
Duderino's user avatar
  • 181
1 vote

What can I tell a student I am mentoring who claims: "I want to do pure mathematics because it is superior to any other subject in the world"?

There are two issues here: potential arrogance and job prospects. As to the first, when he says that pure math is "superior", how does he mean this? If he means simply, "I think this is ...
Jay's user avatar
  • 1,223
0 votes

What can I tell a student I am mentoring who claims: "I want to do pure mathematics because it is superior to any other subject in the world"?

Sounds like a good time to have the academic equivalent of "the talk" with him. The ultimate goal of studying is to put food on the table, both for oneself and for one's family To put food ...
Allure's user avatar
  • 128k
1 vote

What can I tell a student I am mentoring who claims: "I want to do pure mathematics because it is superior to any other subject in the world"?

I studied pure math as well. I would pose the question, what good is studying something if the results are never used? And then provide an analogous subject. To the mentee propose, Suppose a you study ...
user178036's user avatar
4 votes

With computation tools available, why are we still not teaching any proofs in the first-year calculus/linear algebra for deeper understanding?

I'm a professor of mathematics who teaches a lot of linear algebra and calculus. I did not downvote, but I suspect downvoters disagree with the premise of the question, that access to AI tools should ...
David White's user avatar
  • 1,388
3 votes

With computation tools available, why are we still not teaching any proofs in the first-year calculus/linear algebra for deeper understanding?

at least the basic things like epsilon-delta language This is one of those things where, once you understand it, it seems trivial. It probably seems to you like you should be able to explain it in ...
cag51's user avatar
  • 68.8k
1 vote

What can I tell a student I am mentoring who claims: "I want to do pure mathematics because it is superior to any other subject in the world"?

However, I also do not want to tell him that he will find it hard to survive in academia if he does pure math. To me, as an advisor, I think telling the truth about this is one of the responsibility ...
optimal control's user avatar
0 votes

What can I tell a student I am mentoring who claims: "I want to do pure mathematics because it is superior to any other subject in the world"?

Nice and Interesting! In my understanding, Firstly, the responsibility of a mentor is just to guide the student by providing the required information and knowledge. Usually, sometimes, by answering ...
Aasish Kr. Sharma's user avatar
2 votes

What can I tell a student I am mentoring who claims: "I want to do pure mathematics because it is superior to any other subject in the world"?

I'm sure it wouldn't hurt for your mentee to begin "soft searching" now to familiarize himself with the volume - and quality - of current (relevant) job postings in the field. I, for example,...
Natasha N Johnson EdD's user avatar
-1 votes

What can I tell a student I am mentoring who claims: "I want to do pure mathematics because it is superior to any other subject in the world"?

What can I tell a student I am mentoring who claims: "I want to do pure mathematics because it is superior to any other subject in the world"? I'd ask them to back this claim with a proof: ...
ac15's user avatar
  • 99
2 votes

What can I tell a student I am mentoring who claims: "I want to do pure mathematics because it is superior to any other subject in the world"?

Just let him do pure mathematics. In some senses it is superior and in some it is not. Let him discover it on his own.
ziv's user avatar
  • 121
5 votes

What can I tell a student I am mentoring who claims: "I want to do pure mathematics because it is superior to any other subject in the world"?

I would simply answer that humility and respect are qualities a researcher needs. You can be humble and respectful and still love your field above everything else - it's not exclusive.
Dirk's user avatar
  • 38.1k
3 votes

What can I tell a student I am mentoring who claims: "I want to do pure mathematics because it is superior to any other subject in the world"?

Tell him exactly what you think and try to help him then just leave it alone. People only learn these things through experience and they need to experience it themselves. When they struggle they may ...
user186386's user avatar
4 votes

What can I tell a student I am mentoring who claims: "I want to do pure mathematics because it is superior to any other subject in the world"?

"I want to do pure mathematics because it is superior…” Setting aside the deplorable arrogance and snobbery for a minute, here are a few thoughts. Depends what he means by “do”. If he just means ...
bubba's user avatar
  • 1,750
5 votes

What can I tell a student I am mentoring who claims: "I want to do pure mathematics because it is superior to any other subject in the world"?

I believe that OP has a professional duty to advise caution and a more generous viewpoint, as someone above already said. In relation to the student's ultimate success or failure, this will be - ...
Trunk's user avatar
  • 4,458
2 votes

What can I tell a student I am mentoring who claims: "I want to do pure mathematics because it is superior to any other subject in the world"?

Today I had lunch with a friend who told me that I should simply tell this student frankly how difficult the life of a pure mathematician is --- doing research, getting a PhD, publishing papers, ...
No One's user avatar
  • 4,194
9 votes

What can I tell a student I am mentoring who claims: "I want to do pure mathematics because it is superior to any other subject in the world"?

Tell them - tongue in cheek - "available funding is inversely related to purity of a field". Of course, that's not strictly true, but then neither is the statement "pure mathematics is ...
Captain Emacs's user avatar
12 votes

What can I tell a student I am mentoring who claims: "I want to do pure mathematics because it is superior to any other subject in the world"?

I would first discuss with him what he means by "superior". I see at least two possibilities: First is the one you seem to be hearing: He thinks pure math is really the best subject, in some ...
Peter Flom's user avatar
  • 2,999
19 votes

What can I tell a student I am mentoring who claims: "I want to do pure mathematics because it is superior to any other subject in the world"?

I would gently push back if he seeks validation of these beliefs, or brings them up on his own volition in casual conversation. If that happens, I would point out that yes, pure mathematics has a ...
Polytropos's user avatar
88 votes

What can I tell a student I am mentoring who claims: "I want to do pure mathematics because it is superior to any other subject in the world"?

I see no real reason to tell him anything. If he’s being an obnoxious or abrasive jerk, you could advise him to knock that off. And of course, you can share your views and experiences if the right ...
cag51's user avatar
  • 68.8k
11 votes

What can I tell a student I am mentoring who claims: "I want to do pure mathematics because it is superior to any other subject in the world"?

There are, unfortunately, plenty of people who subscribe to the xkcd ranking of fields in terms of purity: https://xkcd.com/435/ With my students, at least, I can guide them towards the POV that much ...
David White's user avatar
  • 1,388
2 votes

What are typical examples of "scholarly work"?

I just wrote an answer to a related question, from the point of view of a professor at a small liberal arts college (SLAC). I explained that, at a SLAC, "scholarly work" can be interpreted ...
David White's user avatar
  • 1,388
0 votes

Which countries allow you to become an Assistant Professor (in CompSci) with just a Masters

Where can one (realistically, not in theory) teach at a University (as a tenure-track professor) without a PhD? (Straight out of graduate school at a U.S. institution) This is not realistically ...
The Doctor's user avatar
  • 3,857
0 votes

Which countries allow you to become an Assistant Professor (in CompSci) with just a Masters

Where can one (realistically, not in theory) teach at a University (as a tenure-track professor) without a PhD? (Straight out of graduate school at a U.S. institution) Technically, universities hire ...
Richard Erickson's user avatar
0 votes

Which countries allow you to become an Assistant Professor (in CompSci) with just a Masters

While I don't know of their current practice, several top tier universities in the US (did) hire such people for special roles, though they aren't tenured. But, Duke, for example, and several others, ...
Buffy's user avatar
  • 365k
11 votes

Which countries allow you to become an Assistant Professor (in CompSci) with just a Masters

The question is impossible to answer because it is "possible" to become a professor without a PhD in nearly every country. In the US, for example, many job adverts for professor positions ...
Wolfgang Bangerth's user avatar
14 votes

Is it appropriate to ask a sick student to leave the classroom?

Please be careful about singling out students based on perceived symptoms. Some students, for example, may have seasonal allergies that will manifest as cold-like symptoms (cough, runny nose, etc.) ...
Jim Belk's user avatar
  • 1,166
16 votes

Is it appropriate to ask a sick student to leave the classroom?

MY lived experience as a teacher is that the boundary between appropriate and in appropriate is less about what you do and more about how you do it. It is usually appropriate to express concerns for ...
Aaargh Zombies's user avatar
3 votes

How to deal with students who regularly ignore my ban on using laptops in the classroom?

Introduction Existing answers that discuss this rule mostly discuss about the effect of using a laptop or not on students. Therefore, I want to start by stating that, if the use of laptops affects the ...
Guanyuming He's user avatar
21 votes

Is it appropriate to ask a sick student to leave the classroom?

In the UK, the guidance for young people attending education settings, including universities, is that people who have the symptoms you've described ("cough, runny nose, etc") should not be ...
Valorum's user avatar
  • 400
31 votes

Is it appropriate to ask a sick student to leave the classroom?

Yes, it is appropriate unless you can have them mask and isolate somewhat from the others. Covid isn't gone yet and can have symptoms like those of a cold. But a cold can also be debilitating for some,...
Buffy's user avatar
  • 365k
7 votes

How to deal with students who regularly ignore my ban on using laptops in the classroom?

At the risk of being labeled as draconian by other Academia SE users, I admit that I "ban" laptops (but not phones and tablets) in most of my courses. That said, such a rule must be ...
AegisCruiser's user avatar
  • 4,407
6 votes

How to deal with students who regularly ignore my ban on using laptops in the classroom?

I'm unconvinced by your premises: Your linked paper (https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0360131520301007) does not seem to support your conclusion. It is examining the effect of ...
Dewi Morgan's user avatar
  • 1,326
5 votes

How to deal with students who regularly ignore my ban on using laptops in the classroom?

It's been 15 years since I was an undergrad, but I went completely paperless halfway through my degree, and learned quickly how to take advanced mathematics notes on my laptop. I seriously doubt I ...
StalePhish's user avatar
4 votes

How to deal with students who regularly ignore my ban on using laptops in the classroom?

Your students are adults and should be treated such as. You bring here some evidence about a research done on a single experiment about the effects of laptop on attention in a classroom. Students are ...
EarlGrey's user avatar
  • 18.2k
1 vote

How to deal with students who regularly ignore my ban on using laptops in the classroom?

While it may be better to have compliance by your students than to forcibly hold them to certain events. These are adults we are referring to here. Perhaps the single student prefers take notes more ...
pet_processor's user avatar
12 votes

How to deal with students who regularly ignore my ban on using laptops in the classroom?

Enforce your rules, however arbitrarily they may be chosen (*) The best recipe for chaos is setting up rules and then not enforcing them. IF you want your students to follow your rules (any of your ...
Stian's user avatar
  • 1,757
63 votes

How to deal with students who regularly ignore my ban on using laptops in the classroom?

To be honest, I think you've got it backwards. I also think you're potentially discriminating against students with accessibility needs or those without much money. A phone is a major source of ...
Chris H's user avatar
  • 8,586
17 votes

How to deal with students who regularly ignore my ban on using laptops in the classroom?

Why do you decide which device (laptop, tablet or smartphone) students should use? The goal of lectures is transfer of knowledge and student's notes is important part of this process as long as it ...
Lurker's user avatar
  • 195
142 votes
Accepted

How to deal with students who regularly ignore my ban on using laptops in the classroom?

There is no meaningful difference between a laptop and tablet as far as distraction. Students today take notes on these devices more often than paper. You shouldn't expect them to purchase the exact ...
Bryan Krause's user avatar
  • 115k
1 vote

How to deal with students who are regularly late?

I'm assuming we're talking about adult students, rather than children. You do nothing. As long as they aren't being disruptive as they enter and do so quietly, it's their problem, not yours. As adults,...
ScottishTapWater's user avatar
3 votes

How to deal with students who are regularly late?

I'd just like to throw something out from a disability perspective: Sometimes (probably most of the time) students are late because of oversleeping, poor schedule management, etc. But it is extremely ...
lupe's user avatar
  • 1,152
0 votes

How to deal with students who are regularly late?

The solution probably depends in part on why the students are late. Are they dorm dwellers waking up late and stumbling across campus to arrive late car commuters who struggle to find parking until ...
arp's user avatar
  • 1,038
4 votes

How to deal with students who are regularly late?

Why is this a problem? Why is it your problem? Start the class on time. If a student misses something because they're late, and has to make extra effort to catch up, that is sufficient discouragement. ...
keshlam's user avatar
  • 5,332
2 votes

How to deal with students who are regularly late?

I'm a lecturer and I teach Calculus this semester. Since discipline is not part of the syllabus and is not required to learn about derivatives, I tend to ignore latecomers as long as they are not ...
Mihail's user avatar
  • 239
0 votes

How to deal with students who are regularly late?

Some decades ago, I was a similar always-late guy. I explain, why are they doing it. As we get up to work, we have a control. In the sense of control theory. As the minutes of the start of the class ...
peterh's user avatar
  • 1,482

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